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How to Avoid Conflict in the Workplace

Conflict in the workplace not only causes unnecessary stress in your life, it can be detrimental to your job. You will only find yourself focusing on the issue rather than your actual job responsibilities throughout the day. There are many ways to handle, manage and minimize conflict in the workplace. If you find yourself in a conflict the main key is to stay calm and open minded.

First, always avoid office gossip. If you find your coworkers talking about a fellow employee, the best thing to do is walk away from the conversation. Converse only about harmless subjects such as television shows, music, news, sports, etc.

Remember to use positive language when discussing the company or co-workers' personal lives. Don’t ever vent to a fellow employee about the company, a coworker or especially your supervisor. If you have a negative comment that you wouldn’t want that person to hear, it’s probably not the best idea to share it in your place of work. Don’t be too trusting. Stay professional at all times.

Be kind and compliment your coworkers appropriately. This sends out positive vibes in the office. The more positive the team is, the more enjoyable the work atmosphere will be.

Never snap when frustrated in the workplace. This takes discipline. Think and listen before you speak. If a problem arises, think clearly and confront the issue without an attacking approach. Use “I feel that….” instead of “You did….” You will be surprised how much faster a problem is solved in an adult conversation rather than a verbal attack.

Make sure to let your fellow co-worker speak their mind and express their side of the issue. It’s important to be open minded when dealing with conflict. The best way to resolve an office conflict is to work together to find a solution that benefits everyone.

- Katie Kennedy, Resource Manager at Kavaliro

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